CBSE News: New Competency-based MCQ Pattern Announced

  • Kurian Jacob
    Kurian Jacob

Times such as these call for reforms in all industries constituting the vast economy. Education has been one of the most dynamic sectors during the pandemic, with every alteration to the management reflecting on the operating structure of the schools and curriculum. Education boards in the country have been constantly under the pressure of having to develop student-friendly examination schedules and criteria to compensate for the setbacks associated with learning. While the challenges in the implementation of seamless online education practices were widespread, the boards devised novel operation standards for the students and teachers to work from their homes. CBSE faced multiple obstacles in 2020 but has grown out of those restraints with properly functional online examination mediums and less rigorous rubrics. One of the latest CBSE news updates has been based on the circular released by the board in October 2021.

According to the revisions in the circular, more than 50% of the Term 1 Board Exam starting in November will be competency-based MCQs. Curious students and teachers are now looking to comprehend this reform to learn how to use the best technologies for a better insight into these examination patterns. The CBSE sample papers that were made available on 2 September had a confusing nature, leaving the teachers and students puzzled at the need to practice a wrong set of MCQs. A video call was initiated by a board of managers, adding schoolteachers to the room for clarity on various subjects. Here is an analysis of the subject-wise CBSE news update to better understand what the competency-based MCQ is all about.

Science

Theories are simplified in textbooks to help students in their organic growth, and this has worked for decades. Similar structures are being adopted in the online learning space as well, and Science is only getting better but easier for the students during the pandemic through the advanced tweaks on the MCQs.

·        One of the queries raised by the teachers and students was about the complexity of the MCQ sets. It was clarified that the papers will not consist of case-based questions, meaning paragraphs and diagrams focusing on a particular study wouldn't be a part of the MCQ. As per the latest CBSE news report, almost 50% of Class 10 Science sample paper comprises tables, diagrams, labeling-based MCQ, and statement-combination questions.

·        The session also focused on the need to understand time management so that the students can set time for each question in the paper, which is time-bound by 1.5 hours. Several CBSE MCQ sample papers are available for the students to try out before giving the board exam in November.

·        Examples were pointed out in the call to throw some light on how the Stand Alone MCQs will be compiled for competency assessment in the Term 1 examination. Diagrams could be a part of the competency-based Stand Alone MCQ if they are being used as a tool to display the technical processes involved in the experiment or scientific studies. These tests are designed to assess the analytical and critical thinking skills of the students.

·        The competency-based education system has also been implemented to the CBSE Class 12 Term 1 Boards in subjects such as Physics, Chemistry, and Biology.

Mathematics

Numbers are digitized in this new-age learning method to make math more effective using multiple calculations. Through the latest MCQ update, CBSE aims at expanding the horizons of the subject's examination patterns.

·        The Term 1 MCQs are being developed for Mathematics using parameters such as the ones in the physical assessments, which include complex and simple case-based questions.

·        Students are being assessed in these examinations for their low order and high order skills, and the questions have been created to help understand the knowledge range of every individual. High order skills are tested using the mixed type MCQs; process-driven questions with diagrams were also included in the Term 1 sample papers.

·        Competency-based exams have become the hot topic post the CBSE news regarding the same, and the experts have suggested less attention to be given to these reports and considerable time to be put into forming questions for the Term 1 board practice sessions.

English

English, being the most prominent global language, has gained more percentage value in the overall score of the Board Exams. CBSE news reports have stated that the importance of the language is growing, and therefore, the weightage is also significant enough for the assessments to be developed into MCQs for understanding, reading, decision making, and analytical skills.

·        However, English will have no MCQ patterns in the writing section, which would include stories, letters, articles, and essays.

·        The Literature and Reading section will also contain reasoning MCQs. Class 10 and 12 students must practice similar sample tests to be prepared for the final examination in November. More than 50% of the questions in the examination would be of this type.

·        High order and low order skills are tested in English as well, but the questions are non-technical, unlike in Science and Social Science.

Ready to Learn

Build your profile with high scores by clearing the sample tests before you attend the Board exam in November. The latest report in the CBSE news section has given clarity to teachers and students about the circular passed last month regarding the Multiple-Choice Questions. If the examinations are held as planned, CBSE will redefine its assessment pattern with more than 50% of the questions for Term 1 being competency-based MCQs.